Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who works with NPR's Morning Edition and Digital Media group. In addition to coordinating Web features, he frequently contributes to NPR's blogs, from The Two Way and All Tech Considered to The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to leading the London 2012 Olympics blog, The Torch. His assignments have included being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road, as well as establishing the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR.org.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, the site won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell trains both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" β€” promoting more collaboration between departments. Other shows he has worked with include All Things Considered, Fresh Air, and Talk of the Nation.

Prior to joining NPR in late 2003, Chappell worked on the Assignment Desk at CNN International, handling coverage in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America, and coordinating CNN's pool coverage out of Qatar.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, as well as editing and producing stories for CNN.com's features division. He also worked at the network's video and research library.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

From 2002-2003, Chappell served as editor-in-chief of The Trans-Atlantic Journal, a business and lifestyle monthly geared for expatriate Europeans working and living in the United States.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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9:51am

Tue July 24, 2012
The Torch

Let's Catch Up: Olympic Coaches Won't March; North Korea Wants Games On TV

London Underground employee John Light (!) carries the Olympic torch onto a train at Wimbledon Station.
LOCOG

Good morning. With three days until the official opener of the 2012 London Games, here's a summary of the news coming out of the Olympics:

  • U.S. (and other) coaches will not be walking in Friday's Opening Ceremonies, because Olympic honchos wanted to shorten the ceremony. Some don't even have tickets.
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4:00pm

Mon July 23, 2012
The Torch

Before Olympics, U.S. Basketball Gives Itself Hard Tests; Spain Awaits

Kobe Bryant (left) drives against Manu Ginobili of Argentina during an exhibition game between USA and Argentina in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday. The U.S. team faces another test Tuesday, against world No. 2 Spain.
David Ramos Getty Images

The U.S. Olympic basketball team narrowly beat Argentina late Sunday, 86-80, as the two teams prepare for the start of the London Games Friday. The tight score came despite a fast start for the U.S. squad, who were dressed in throwback uniforms inspired by the 1992 Dream Team.

The Americans raced to a 31-16 lead early on, but they were only 4 points ahead late in the game, and pulled away thanks to three-pointers by Kevin Durant and Chris Paul β€” who posted a photo of his uniform on Instagram.

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12:43pm

Mon July 23, 2012
The Torch

Many Muslim Olympians Get A Break On Ramadan Fasting

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 8:39 am

Britain's Abdul Buhari competes in the discus at the European Athletics Championships last month. With the Olympics coinciding with Ramadan, Buhari and many other Muslim athletes are postponing their fasting until after their events.
Ian Walton Getty Images

Hundreds of Muslim athletes are participating in the London Olympics, which officially begin Friday. But along with travel and other logistics, they're also adjusting to Ramadan, the holy month that requires them to fast.

Many athletes say they'll forego the ban on consuming food and drink, as Barbara Bradley Hagerty reports on Morning Edition. The daylong fast is a threat to a strong performance β€” and their hopes of bringing pride to their nation, they say.

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7:33pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Phelps And Lochte Set To Square Off In Olympic Trials Final

Originally published on Mon June 25, 2012 8:35 pm

Michael Phelps swims in a preliminary heat at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials in Omaha, Nebraska. Phelps and rival Ryan Lochte were awoken from their afternoon naps by a fire alarm at their hotel Monday.
Al Bello Getty Images

The London Olympics are still more than a month away, but fans of swimming were eager to see the 2012 edition of the rivalry between Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte get started Monday, when the two Olympic gold medalists face off in the final of the 400-meter individual medley at the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Update at 8:32 p.m. Lochte Beats Phelps

Lochte defeated Phelps at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials.

Here's more from The Associated Press:

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6:55pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Greek Workers Find Ancient Highway In Subway Dig

Officials unveiled an ancient road found during construction of Thessaloniki's new subway system Monday.
Nikolas Giakoumidis AP

A Greek city's new subway project has led to the discovery of an ancient road made of marble that was laid nearly 2,000 years ago. The road in Thessaloniki is made of paving stones that show signs of use by both horse-drawn carriages and local children, the AP reports.

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5:05pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Paralympic Cyclists Inspire Each Other, And A Documentary

Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 6:44 am

Paralympic cyclists are featured in the upcoming documentary Unstoppables.
black train films

The opening ceremony of the London 2012 Summer Olympics are just over a month away β€” leading NPR and other media to cover the intense preparations for the games. That also means the Paralympic Games are on the way, as athletes with physical disabilities round into top form for the Aug. 29 opening day.

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1:54pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Vatican Hires Fox News Reporter To Advise Media Office

People gather on St. Peter's square to hear Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican Sunday. The Vatican has hired Fox News correspondent Greg Burke to advise its press office.
Alberto Pizzoli AFP/Getty Images

Seeking to modernize and widen its dealings with the media, the Vatican has hired Fox News Channel's Rome correspondent to advise its press office. The move will put journalist Greg Burke, who is also a member of Opus Dei, into a new role working with Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi.

For NPR's Newscast desk, Sylvia Poggioli reports from Rome:

"Greg Burke, 52, has been with Fox 10 years, and he'll be the first Vatican communications expert with experience outside the world of Catholic media.

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1:06pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Fukushima Markets Get First Local Seafood Since Nuclear Meltdown

Originally published on Mon June 25, 2012 2:11 pm

Markets in the port city of Soma, in Fukushima, Japan, are once again selling local seafood. In this file photo, volunteers help clean up a SomaΓ‚ seafood restaurant damaged in last March's tsunami and earthquake.
Hiro Komae AP

Seafood markets in Fukushima, Japan, are being stocked with locally caught products again, as officials seek to reintroduce local fare in the area that was hit by an earthquake, a tsunami and a nuclear meltdown in March of 2011.

The AP reports on the details:

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12:09pm

Mon June 25, 2012
The Two-Way

Venus Williams Bows Out Of Wimbledon On First Day

Venus Williams stretches for a return in her first-round defeat to Russia's Elena Vesnina on the first day of the Wimbledon Championships. For Williams, 32, it was her earliest exit from Wimbledon in 15 years.
Miguel Medina AFP/Getty Images

Venus Williams has lost in the first round of the Wimbledon Championships, a striking defeat for the five-time winner of the grass-court tournament. She lost to Elena Vesnina of Russia in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3, after failing to establish her serve.

"I have to give credit to her," Williams said. "She made hardly any errors and served well."

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3:01am

Fri June 22, 2012
All Tech Considered

Tesla's New Electric Sedan: Five Passengers, 89 MPG, And No Engine

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 10:46 am

The new Model S from Tesla has a maximum range of 265 miles with a full charge. The car can also reach 60 miles per hour in 4.4 seconds β€” a feat the company says may affect overall mileage.
Bill Chappell NPR

The Tesla electric car company has high hopes for its new Model S, which it calls "the world's first premium electric sedan." The new car, which is being delivered to customers Friday, is priced at around half the cost of the only other Tesla model, the svelte, two-door Roadster.

The new car's sticker price starts around $57,000; a $7,500 federal tax credit drops the starting price just below $50,000. But like its gas-powered cousins, this electric vehicle has so many options available that its price can soar to near $100,000.

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2:50pm

Thu June 14, 2012
All Tech Considered

ICANN's Call For New Domain Names Brings Criticism, And $357 Million

Originally published on Thu June 14, 2012 6:01 pm

ICANN President and CEO Rod Beckstrom unveiled nearly 2,000 proposed new "top-level" domain names during a press conference in London Wednesday.
Tim Hales AP

ICANN, the corporation that rules the Internet's address book, plans to increase the number of "top level" domains from the current 22 to 1,000 domains starting in early 2013. But not everyone is happy with that plan β€” and many say it's an open call to price-gougers and con artists.

Others complain that with 1,930 applications, ICANN β€” a non-profit corporation β€” raised just over $357 million. The U.S.-created entity was also in the news last spring, when it approved the .xxx domain.

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5:05am

Thu June 14, 2012
Sports

A Minor Leaguer's Life: Bats, Games And A Nickname

Originally published on Thu June 14, 2012 11:51 am

Tyler Saladino, 22, makes a throw from second base during warm-ups with the AA Birmingham Barons.
Russell Lewis NPR

Tyler Saladino plays baseball in the minor leagues in Birmingham, Ala. A prospect in the Chicago White Sox system, he was sent to the AA Birmingham Barons after spending part of spring training with the major league club.

And when he arrived in Alabama, Saladino's first task was to find a place to live, as he tells Morning Edition's David Greene. He settled on sharing an apartment.

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10:13am

Sat June 9, 2012
The Salt

To Grow A Craft Beer Business, The Secret's In The Water

Originally published on Sat June 9, 2012 9:47 pm

Craft brewers are reaching markets far from their home breweries. In a Washington, D.C., store, beers from California, Colorado, Louisiana, Vermont, and elsewhere are for sale.
Bill Chappell NPR

It's a good time to be a craft brewer, as Americans are thirsty for full-flavored and local beers. But when small breweries grow, they can also risk losing some of the "craftiness" their fans love. And when they expand, many brewers have to rewrite their recipes β€” starting with the water.

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3:38am

Thu May 31, 2012
The Picture Show

On The Way Back To Base: 'We're Gonna Get Shot At'

Originally published on Thu May 31, 2012 1:01 pm

Sgt. Kyle Gonzales, a sniper with the 82nd Airborne, smokes a cigarette after a battle near the village of Babaker, Ghazni province. The soldiers have been engaged in gun battles every time they push into the hamlets north of their forward operating base.
David Gilkey NPR

U.S. and Afghan forces are fighting to gain control of a major crossroads in a part of Afghanistan that has seen so few NATO troops that one village elder mistook the Americans for Russians β€” from the long-ago Soviet war.

"It's an absolutely crucial area," says NPR photographer David Gilkey, who has been embedded with U.S. troops involved in the offensive in eastern Afghanistan's Ghazni province.

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3:02am

Thu May 24, 2012
All Tech Considered

Travel Apps That Help You Pack, Explore, And Enjoy The Scenery

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 7:59 am

An image from a demo of the Stuck on Earth app, which Lauren Goode of All Things D calls "a photographer's dream."
Stuck on Earth

Mobile phones and tablets have put a world of information at our fingertips, even when we're on the go. It would seem natural, then, for smartphones to help make traveling easier and more fun.

But not all apps are created equal β€” so Morning Edition co-host Steve Inskeep sought advice from Lauren Goode, a senior editor at All Things D, where she recently reviewed travel apps. Here are some of the tips Goode discussed with Steve:

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2:44am

Thu May 24, 2012
Education

National Geography Bee: Test Your World Knowledge

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 12:40 pm

The 10 finalists of the 2012 National Geographic Bee are competing for prizes including a $25,000 scholarship and a trip to the Galapagos Islands.
Rebecca Hale National Geographic

The final round of the 2012 National Geographic Bee takes place Thursday, with students between the fourth and eighth grades testing their knowledge of countries, canals and lava lakes. Of the 54 contestants who came to the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C., for the bee, only 10 remain.

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7:24pm

Tue May 22, 2012
All Tech Considered

Stolen Phone Beams Photos To Owner, Who Puts Them On Facebook

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 8:06 pm

A month after Katy McCaffrey's iPhone was stolen, photographs began streaming from the phone to her "cloud" account. She used them to create a photo album on Facebook; she called it "Stolen iPhone Adventures."
Facebook

There are many ways to find a lost or stolen cellphone. You can call the number and see who answers; you can use "Find My Phone" apps that track your phone's GPS. Or, if your camera phone automatically posts photos to your account in "the cloud," you can simply watch your photo feed and look for clues in the strange new images that start popping up. Just be prepared to see anything β€” like scenes from a cruise ship.

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5:07pm

Fri May 18, 2012
The Salt

U.S. Craft Beer Brewers Thrive, Despite Small Share Of The Market

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 11:35 am

A row of taps highlights specialty and imported beers at Brouwerij Lane, in Brooklyn, New York. Craft brewers have found a way to thrive, even as the U.S. economy struggles.
Bill Chappell NPR

It's a good time to brew beer in America. According to beer expert Julia Herz, U.S. brewing isn't just on the upswing, it's on top. "We're now the No. 1 destination for beer, based on diversity and amount of beers," she says.

But if you want to see the strength of America's beer industry, you may want to look past beverage giants like Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors. According to the Brewers Association, nearly 2,000 American brewers operated during 2011 β€” the most since the 1880s.

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3:16am

Fri May 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Bike To Work Day: Your Photos, And Riding Advice From Grant Petersen

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:18 pm

Jennifer Drake and her daughter, Alex, pause before their morning ride. "My daughter and I bike to school (her work) 3 miles roundtrip daily," Drake writes.
@JennLDrake

For many people, Bike to Work Day (which is today) is a reason to put air in their bike's tires and see if their chain is too rusty to get them to work on time. And as a growing list of photographs shows, many people who follow NPR online also ride to work.

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5:17pm

Wed May 16, 2012
The Two-Way

Get Ready For Bike To Work Day (And Share Your Photos)

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 6:11 pm

Three men stand with their penny farthing bicycles. Follow their example for Bike to Work Day, and take a photo of yourself and your bike. Then, post the photo to Twitter or Instagram, with the hashtag #NPRbike.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Bike to Work Day is this Friday, May 18. And that prompts a question: Do you bike to work? If so, you should prove it β€” by taking a photo of yourself with your bike. Then share the picture, and we'll consider it for NPR's Bike to Work Day gallery.

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1:18pm

Fri May 11, 2012
The Two-Way

'Mama Bird' Evelyn Johnson Dies At 102; Logged 7 Years Of Flight Time

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 2:12 pm

Evelyn Johnson, who holds a world record as the most experienced female pilot, appeared on NPR in 2003. Johnson died Thursday at the age of 102.
Charles Mayer NPR

Evelyn Bryan Johnson, a record-setting pilot who was born just six years after the Wright brothers made their historic flight, has died at the age of 102. Johnson, who began flying in 1944, holds the Guinness world record for the most hours logged by a female pilot β€” more than 57,000.

In addition to her accomplished flying record, Johnson also helped many other pilots earn their wings. After one student called her Mama Bird, the nickname stuck with Johnson, as she gave lessons and FAA flight exams to thousands of pilots.

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2:49pm

Thu May 10, 2012
The Two-Way

Rare Calico Lobster Turns Heads, And Escapes Dinner Menu

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 4:29 pm

The calico lobster known as Calvin is shown in this photo provided by Boston's New England Aquarium. The lobster is dark with bright orange and yellow spots.
Tony LaCasse New England Aquarium

A calico lobster that had been living in obscurity off the coast of Maine has now been catapulted into a sort of celebrity, thanks to its rare coloring: a calico mix of orange and yellow spots. Researchers say it could be a 1 in 30 million specimen.

The invertebrate was caught off Winter Harbor, Maine; it was saved from the cooking pot at Jasper White's Summer Shack restaurant in Cambridge, Mass., after the staff noticed its striking coloration.

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1:49pm

Thu May 10, 2012
The Two-Way

Russian Agency Says It Foiled Potential Attack On Sochi, 2014 Olympics Host City

A Russian anti-terrorism agency says that its secret service agents have thwarted a planned attack on Sochi, the city slated to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. Russia's FSB security service says it found 10 caches of weapons that it believes were meant to be used during either preparations for the Olympics or in an attack during the Games themselves.

From Moscosw, Jessica Golloher filed this report for NPR's Newscast:

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12:24pm

Thu May 10, 2012
The Two-Way

And Now For The Weather, Let's Go To Prince Charles

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 12:39 pm

Prince Charles presented the weather report on a BBC Scotland newscast, surprising many viewers.
BBC Scotland

In Scotland, viewers of a nightly BBC news program got a surprise Thursday, when Prince Charles stood in front of a weather map to tell them about all the rain and cold they'd soon experience.

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11:45am

Thu May 10, 2012
The Two-Way

Mars Rover Opportunity Emerges From Winter Doldrums, Gets Back On Move

A mosaic of images taken in January 2012 shows Opportunity's vista north (left) and northeast (right), in an outcrop known as "Greeley Haven," where the rover spent its fifth Martian winter. The image released by NASA is presented in "false color," to make differences in the landscape easier to see.
NASA

With the darkest days of the Martian winter now over, NASA took its Opportunity Mars Rover for a drive this week. The rover had been stationary while its solar panels lacked enough sunlight to power its batteries.

The rover's drive Tuesday was a short one: "about 12 feet northwest and downhill," according to NASA. The agency says Opportunity has driven 21.4 miles since it landed on Mars in January of 2004.

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3:23am

Wed May 2, 2012
All Tech Considered

NBC Will Stream The London Olympics Live β€” But Only To TV Subscribers

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 7:03 am

Many track fans watched online four years ago, as sprinter Usain Bolt set a world record at the Beijing Olympics. This year, NBC will stream video of all 302 events online. And Bolt, seen here showing his appreciation for video in 2010, will try to repeat his feat.
Mark Dadswell Getty Images

For decades, Olympics fans have loathed two words: "tape" and "delay." But this summer, things will be different: For the first time, NBC will stream live video of the London Games, online and via mobile.

If you think that decision is overdue, you're not alone. Sports Business Daily media reporter John Ourand says he is shocked it has taken this long for the network to put live video of all Olympic events online.

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1:02pm

Tue May 1, 2012
The Two-Way

'Incredible' Race: America's Lopez Lomong Sets 2012 World Record [VIDEO]

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 3:07 pm

In his first race at the 5000-meter distance, runner Lopez Lomong set a 2012 world record. But the American also ran into some unusual trouble late in the race. This file photo shows Lomong at the 2008 Olympics.
Clive Rose Getty Images

The sports world is brimming with talk about Lopez Lomong, the American runner who set a 2012 world best in the men's 5,000-meter race in California Sunday. It was Lomong's first race at that distance (just over 3 miles), which he covered in 13 minutes and 11.63 seconds. But the race took a very unusual turn in its final laps.

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10:53am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Salt

Don't Call It A Malbec: Europe Sours On British Winery's Plan

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:17 am

The European Union is forcing a British winery to give away wine made with Argentinian Malbec grapes. Here, a cluster of Malbec grapes hang from a vine.
Eric Risberg AP

A British winemaker has finally been given official approval to release a limited-edition wine made in collaboration with Malbec grape growers in Argentina, on one condition: It can't sell the wine, or label it a Malbec. Actually, it can't even call it wine at all.

The Chapel Down winery's only option for getting rid of its wine is to give it away as a sample, calling it a "fruit-derived alcoholic beverage from produce sourced outside the EU."

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11:30am

Fri April 20, 2012
The Two-Way

Video Of Children Portraying Adult Criminals Is Withdrawn In Mexico

Children portray drug lords, corrupt police officers and human traffickers in "NiΓ±os IncΓ³modos," which was viewed more than 1.8 million times in one week on YouTube.
YouTube

A video that caused a sensation in Mexico for using child actors to highlight the country's social and political challenges has been removed from both YouTube and the website of Nuestro Mexico Del Futuro (Our Mexico of the Future), the group that produced it.

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11:56am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Drinking On The Job: Is 2012 The New 1966?

Actor Jon Hamm in a scene from AMC's Mad Men. The show is set in the 1960s β€” but today, many companies provide their employees with ready access to alcohol.
Ron Jaffe/AMC AP

The TV show Mad Men has won fans for breathing life β€” and a heavy whiff of bourbon β€” into the fictional advertising world of 1960s New York. But surely no American company has such a liver-pickling culture in this day and age, right?

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